The only thing positive about this recent heat spike is that it’s allowed me to consider the various texts I might consult for that literary dinner them that I’d mentioned previously.
It’s not so much that it’s been ‘hot,’ but rather, that it’s been humid. Oh, how it’s been humid – I can’t recall when we last had something like this. It’s been going on for several days, and my hope is that it’s winding up soon. The weather jockeys say that it’ll be over by Monday evening, but these are the same people who’ve been forecasting rain for the last three days, so please forgive me if I’m skeptical.
With the temps and humidity so high, cooking in my home is an impossibility. That’s kind of nice because it’ll allow me to decide what type of meals might be literary minded. To me, an obvious choice would be a Sherlock Holmes story, but I don’t know. It’s almost too obvious. A favorite tale of mine is Joseph Heller’s Catch-22, and that has some possibilities. One would think that a military story (it takes place during WWII) would not lend itself to any interesting culinary choices, but remember – the setting is mid-war Italy, and a good portion of the book takes place away from the airbase that the protagonist reluctantly calls home. There are some interesting Italian options with that.
Another that has some interesting possibilities would be Toni Morrison’s Sula. (This would be a piece of cake for me.) E.L. Doctrow’s Ragtime would be kind of fun, given that I have a number of turn-of-the-last-century cookbooks on hand. The only non-American novel that immediately springs to mind (as I said, I’m still thinking about all of this) is Jane Stevenson’s The Winter Queen, which is set in mid-seventeenth century Holland. Given that neither of the protagonists are Dutch, as well as the general cosmopolitan atmosphere of 1646 Holland, I think I could have a lot of fun with that one.
But none of this is going to happen until after this heat (and humidity) passes on by! I’m going nuts here . . .